I’m going to let you in on a little secret: I used to hate 10-minute plays.
I don’t know why exactly… perhaps it’s because—as a playwright—I found it a real challenge to create a satisfying story in just 10 pages. My first 10-minute play attempts always seemed to bleed into more pages, and felt unsatisfying in their rapid resolutions. But as I’ve gone on to do more and more with short plays, I realize that the thing that used to bother me about 10 minute plays was that I just wasn’t very good at them yet.
I’d like to think I’ve gotten better writing short pieces—of conserving space and creating tighter, more exciting worlds—and that by becoming more aware of the real-estate value a blank page actually represents, my longer pieces have become tighter, more exciting, and richer as well.
And as a result, I’ve become a huge fan of these tasty little 10-minute morsels of playwright excellence. So much so, that I dedicate a sizable portion of my year to supporting and producing other short pieces… and yesterday I saw 15 truly awesome short plays brought to life here in Waco and can’t believe that I have to winnow this list down to just 11 or 12 pieces for production.
— LittleBlackDressINK (@LBlackDressINK) May 23, 2015
I’ve written a lot about producing from a playwright’s perspective this week, and I hope it was helpful to those of you who—like myself—have felt stuck, frustrated, or fed up with the stasis of waiting. But I also hope that, even if you have no intention of ever donning a producer’s cap, that you feel like you’ve gotten a little insight how/why some of these festivals work the way they do. We’re all in theatre because we love something about it’s incredible contradictions and magic, but the true power of theatre is the unity of intention it requires on all who come together in order to make it happen.
With that, I’m wrapping up my blogging week in love of writing, writers, and all who take joy from the realization of imagination! If you want to stay in touch, you can follow me @LadyPlaywright or you can follow Little Black Dress INK @LBlackDressINK – we’ll be posting more updates on this year’s fest as it heads to LA for a reading of our winning plays at Samuel French Book Shop on July 11th, and then production in Prescott, AZ August 6-9.
And then we’ll get started on the 2016 Fest, and do it all over again!